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Firm Friendship Between U.s., Israel Stressed by Golda Meir in Knesset

June 27, 1962
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Describing as “baseless,” speculation about Israel’s relations with the Kennedy Administration, Mrs. Golda Meir, Israel’s Foreign Minister, declared in Parliament last night that she had no doubt that the basic relations between Israel and the United States would continue to rest as in previous years on “firm foundations of friendship” and friendly discussion on all matters of common interest.

She said it was only natural that the new Administration should intensify its study of the international problems it faced. Conceding there were differences on some matters, she pointed out that in any appraisal of the Middle East situation it would be “altogether difficult” to assume there could be a complete identity of views between two countries, particularly between countries as different in size and world standing as the United States and Israel.

Mrs. Meir, who made these comments in introducing her Ministry’s budget, expressed “regret, astonishment and concern” at the indifference of the great nations to anti-Israel hostility of the Arab countries. She expressed concern that the “flouting” of the United Nations charter by the Arab states and their anti-Israel boycott had not led to “the sharp reaction” they deserved. She referred specifically to the election of Egypt to the UN Security Council and to the UN committee on disarmament.

Foreign Ministry budget estimates have been raised to 36,000,000 pounds ($12,000,000) for this fiscal year as against a budget of 20,000,000 pounds ($6,666,666) for the previous year. Mrs. Meir said the budget would make possible increased activities in international cooperation, cultural relations and public relations as well as the needs of a broadening of Israel’s representation abroad.

She expressed the hope that an independent Algeria would not be drawn automatically into the Arab “circle of hate and hostility” toward Israel. She added that Israel would be happy “if the independence of Algeria will become the first sign pointing toward a new chapter in Israel-Arab relations.” She reiterated Israel’s readiness to meet with its Arab neighbors for talks on any issue at any place at any level and without pre-conditions in the “firm convictions” that differences could be peacefully resolved.

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